Austin, Texas tap water profile

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jcole

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Does anyone have a profile for the tap water in Austin, Texas?

Or know where you can find such information?

Thanks,
John
 

damrass

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I would try contacting the utility company that supplies the tap water. I think around here they send us one every 6 months.
 

Saccharomyces

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Call the utility dept and they should send it to you.

In Pflugerville our profile includes everything needed for brewing. Basically the water is almost unusable. :D I dilute it 2:1 for most beers with RO water and still add gypsum or calcium chloride and 5.2 buffer to adjust the mash pH, and I add 3mL of phosphoric acid to my sparge water. Depending on the ratio of surface water to Edward's water in your mix, it may require more or less treatment than mine does.
 

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It's missing the bicarbonates. You need to know the ppm of bicarbonates, it's the most important number. If you call them up and ask they might have that info handy. Otherwise you will need to send a sample to a lab for analysis to be exact.

What I do is dilute to get below 150ppm bicarbonates (or less if I'm doing a blonde style which requires softer water), and then add enough calcium to get on the left side of the scale in Palmer's How To Brew.

http://www.howtobrew.com/images/f81.gif
 
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jcole

jcole

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Just heard back from them.

The average level of bicarbonates in the City of Austin tap water is 30 ppm.

John
 

Saccharomyces

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That seems really low but is believable if the water is surface water. If that is the case you are good to go and you can probably use your water as-is, you may want to use 5.2 buffer but that would be all required...
 
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jcole

jcole

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I'm still doing PM - so it sounds like I'm okay with filtered Austin tap water for now?

Thanks for the help.
 

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Profile looks like lake water, so yes you should be fine, just run it through a carbon filter. I'll post a pic of my filter rig when I get home.

I found out recently we were switched to lake water also, so now our profile is similar, hardness as CaMg is 140ppm according to the utility dept. which is great. I need to send in a sample to get my own water report from Ward Labs to fine tune, but I have noticed the pH level of the mash no longer needs much adjustment for my last few batches. I now just add a little bit of CaCl and call it good.
 
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jcole

jcole

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Profile looks like lake water, so yes you should be fine, just run it through a carbon filter. I'll post a pic of my filter rig when I get home.
It takes like lake water too! That is, before my filter gets a hold of it. :D
 

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zgardener

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Figure I'd resurrect this a thread real quick.
I've been brewing with Todd Henry, the brewer at Lovejoys, and per his collaboration with NXNW, (512), Indy, etc, pretty much every brewer in town simply uses .32 ml of 75% Phosphoric acid solution in the water. That's it.
Some will add a touch of calcium carbonate or gypsum for a stout or a very hoppy beer, but I've been experimenting with this, and my beer has been so much cleaner with no treatment other than a carbon filter and the Phosphoric acid.
Just be careful, the stuff you buy at the brew shop is only 10% Phosphoric acid solution.
Hope this helps.
 

SonOfLiberty

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Thanks Z. This may be the simple addition I've been looking for. I'll try to remember to post back on my findings. My beers have just been a little off and I'm thinking it's the water. Round Rock water is pretty bad and I've only been using a standard charcoal filter.
 

zgardener

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Oops, may have been unclear. .32 ml of 75% phosphoric acid per gallon. Like I said, what you get at the brew shop is typically 10% solution, so adjust accordingly.
 

zgardener

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Thanks Z. This may be the simple addition I've been looking for. I'll try to remember to post back on my findings. My beers have just been a little off and I'm thinking it's the water. Round Rock water is pretty bad and I've only been using a standard charcoal filter.
Note that city of Round Rock water is Probably different than city of Austin utilities...
 

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Sorry to resurrect this thread again. zgardener, I assume there's some filtering going on to remove chloramines right? Or is it seriously just tap water plus acid?
 

scone

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Hey Z, I tried your technique adding 20mL of 10% phosphoric acid to 8.75 gallons of water (yielding a 6 gal. batch). No idea about the beer yet (it's a lager, will be a while on that). My efficiency seems to have suffered massively, though I'm not 100% sure if it's the pH, or something else. (E.g. I have no control over the crush, may have undersparged a bit due to a late decoction).
 

rhamilton

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Hey Z, I tried your technique adding 20mL of 10% phosphoric acid to 8.75 gallons of water (yielding a 6 gal. batch). No idea about the beer yet (it's a lager, will be a while on that). My efficiency seems to have suffered massively, though I'm not 100% sure if it's the pH, or something else. (E.g. I have no control over the crush, may have undersparged a bit due to a late decoction).
He recommended 0.32 mL of 75% acid -- You added 20.0 mL of 10%?

I've had great success with an RV filter, 1/4 Campden per 5 gallons (for chloramines), and just a 'touch' of residual Star San (it's 780ppm Phosphoric Acid after dilution).
 

scone

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He recommended 0.32 mL of 75% acid -- You added 20.0 mL of 10%?

I've had great success with an RV filter, 1/4 Campden per 5 gallons (for chloramines), and just a 'touch' of residual Star San (it's 780ppm Phosphoric Acid after dilution).
Well to be fair he recommended .32 mL of 75% per gallon. Which I calculated to be 2.4 mL of 10% per gallon, or right around 20mL for an 8 gallon treatment. Did I do that wrong? :drunk:
 
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